Sunday, 15 September, 2019

NTSB Launches Investigation Into NYC Helicopter Crash

New York City Fire Department firefighters work on the roof of 787 Seventh Avenue at 51st Street after a helicopter crashed there NYC Helicopter Pilot May Have Maneuvered ‘To Spare the People on the Ground:’ Fellow Pilot
Deanna Wagner | 12 June, 2019, 11:10

The crash on Monday killed the Tim McCormack, the former fire chief in Clinton Corners, New York, who was an experienced pilot.

The rules demand at least 3 miles (4.8 kilometers) of visibility and that aircraft steer clear of clouds for daytime flights.

Tim McCormack was killed when his helicopter crashed into a 54-story building at 787 Seventh Street around 2pm.

McCormack's Agusta A109E helicopter crashed into the 229-meter (750-foot) tall AXA Equitable building in midtown Manhattan on Monday, sparking a fire and forcing office workers to evacuate.

The crash triggered memories of 9/11 along with heightened fears of terrorism, but authorities have confirmed there is no evidence that the crash was intentional.

Almost five years ago, in October 2014, McCormack was flying a different helicopter over the Hudson River with six tourists on board when a bird struck and broke part of the windshield, according to CNN affiliate WABC.

Fellow Democrat Rep. Nydia Velazquez said she wants tourist flights grounded.

Five people died after a helicopter plunged into Manhattan's east river near the upscale Upper East Side neighborhood in March 2018.

"The risks to New Yorkers are just too high", Maloney said.

Brazy said McCormack did not contact air traffic control with his planned route of flight, and was not required to do so.

The city now allows helicopters to take off and land from three heliports, one each on the East and West sides and in downtown Manhattan.

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The helicopter went down about 11 minutes after taking off from a heliport along the East River, a little more than a mile (1.6 kilometers) away.

NY police Commissioner James O'Neill said Monday it took off from a nearby heliport 11 minutes before the crash, which was described as a "hard landing".

Helicopters going in and out of the heliport on East 34th Street are only allowed to fly in the restricted area if they have permission and are in constant communication with air traffic control. He said the report would not include the cause of the crash.

"Those questions are part of our investigation", safety board spokesman Terry Williams said. The helicopter was not equipped with a flight data recorder or a cockpit voice recorder, he said.

Weather is one of the factors being investigated.

"Should the helicopter have been flying?"

"There were no other injuries that we know of at this point in time to anyone in the building or on the ground", he said: adding: "Thank God for that". The helicopter was a privately-owned aircraft used for executive charter flights.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio quelled concerns at a press conference later the same afternoon, saying "There is no indication at this time that this was an act of terror and there is no ongoing threat to New York City based on the information we have right now".

But a new Uber service is threatening to crowd the skies once more.

"It's a bit like Groundhog Day that every time there's a deadly crash, politicians say great things and then everybody goes back to their business", said Dellaportas, a lawyer.